In our family, we have the pleasure of receiving oranges from relatives and this makes it so much fun to show the kids how to make orange juice and learn some fractions! If you do not have oranges handy, you can always use any type of fruit because showing the kids about frations with many different types of shapes and objects can get them away from fractions as having always to do with circles.
Start by showing what is the “whole”. With oranges, the whole orange is the “whole”. Cut this in half, into two equal parts. Show this your child and say that each piece is a part of the whole orange and ask them whether the two parts are the same or different. Ask your child to put the two parts together to make the whole and tell them that each part has a special name, a half.
Then cut each half into two more equal parts, fourths. Ask your child the same question about what they notice, or see with the new parts of the whole. Are they equal to each other? Are they halves anymore? How many parts are there now to the whole? Four? Those are called fourths because there are four parts to the whole. If you want to go further and you still have your child’s attention, cut each fourth in half. Ask the same questions as before, but now they are eighths because there are eight equal parts to the whole orange.
Now have your orange snack and enjoy making orange juice!
Where is this in the Schedule of Activities for ages 18 months to 3 years?
2. Wednesday-Big and Small
3. Thursday- More and Less
Where is this in the Schedule of Activities for ages 3-5?
1. Friday- Numbers, Part/Whole, Half, Thirds
Something to Think About:
If you would like to just focus on a half of an orange, then do it. 🙂 Ask your child how many halves might it take to fill a whole cup with juice?How many halves would it take to fill a cup of juice for each family member? If this is how many halves it took to fill a cup, how many halves will it take to fill two cups? Begin asking those questions and manually find out the answers after they guess.
If you want to cut the pieces into eighths, then do it. If you want to focus on sixteenths, then do it. Make adjustments here and there because every family and child is different. Always remember to give yourself time and your children time to do this learning. If you only get to talk about the concept of half, great! It is not a race. It is not who gets there first in the learning, it is about getting there that is more important. 🙂